ATLANTA — Snoop Dogg remembered watching all of the Cheech and Chong movies growing up, idolizing their ability to always escape from danger in their comedy films. Wiz Khalifa revered Snoop Dogg for his marijuana-smoking, ultra-smooth West Coast swagger shown extensively throughout his rap career.
The album is the soundtrack of the rappers' upcoming comedy, Mac & Devin Go to High School, expected to be released early next year. The duo feel they are capable of following the footsteps of Cheech and Chong, who gained fame through their marijuana humor.
“They smoked joints, they were funny, they were cool and they would get into real situations,” Snoop Dogg said. “To me, that's what me and Wiz represent. A lot of kids growing up don't understand who Cheech and Chong are. So we're the modern-day image of them. We're bringing it back.”
Snoop Dogg and Khalifa have embodied the fun-filled, carefree life, with a devotion to smoking marijuana. Their easygoing demeanor is displayed on the duo's single, Young, Wild & Free, featuring Bruno Mars, which peaked at No. 10 on Billboard's Hot 100 chart.
The rappers are the latest popular hip-hop characters to create an album and movie revolving around their marijuana excursions. Rapper Redman and Method Man appeared in the 2001 film, How High.
But Khalifa said he and Snoop Dogg, who just finished a six-city tour, are “trying to create our own lane. There have been others to pave the way for us, so we're just trying to keep it going, and tell our own stories.”
Some believe the rappers are having too much fun with their storytelling. In May, there were reports that school officials canceled the filming of High School at a California high school after learning the movie theme centered around marijuana, an illegal substance.
Snoop Dogg and Khalifa denied there were any problems. “We heard about it, but it didn't mean much to us,” Snoop Dogg said. “We got done what we needed to get done. It was shot and promptly prepared.”
Snoop Dogg, 40, took a liking to the 24-year-old Khalifa after he noticed his kids' infatuation with the rapper's ubiquitous 2010 hit Black and Yellow. From there, Snoop Dogg invited Khalifa to his home in Los Angeles.
“We have built a bond and a friendship that's going to last a lifetime,” Khalifa said. “People will hear it in the music, and see it in the movie.”
The two rappers decided that same day to collaborate. They didn't waste time, filming the movie and recording the album within a two-month timeframe.
In High School, Khalifa stars as a senior valedictorian named Devin who is only focused on his academics. He breaks out of his shell after meeting Snoop Dogg's character Mac, a teenage student (yes, he is playing a teen) who has street smarts but struggles to apply them in the classroom.
“A magical situation” is how Snoop Dogg described his partnership with Khalifa. “I've been around magic a lot of times from being with Dr. Dre, Tupac, Master P. and Nate Dogg. What me and Wiz had was a magical moment right there.”
ON THE NET
THEIR OWN GENRE: (L-R) Richard “Cheech” Marin and Tommy Chong.